Akihabara and Gaming

Game Time from Trip III

July 31, 2016

game time in akiha

Not that I’m a huge gamer, maybe just a regular gamer of occasional RPGing, Wii dancing, and hidden object finding. I’d probably devote more time to gaming if I had more time. Anyway, I wanted to check out the Akihabara arcades because I hadn’t done much more than watch people lose at UFO catchers in Japan. And there are plenty of UFO catchers in Japan. Maybe…too many. And there’s much more stimulating, intellectually satisfying gaming machines to be discovered.

I got up early, still in my jetlag mode, and made a beeline to Akihabara after breakfast. It was 9:00 a.m., and I figures most businesses would be open. But- the arcades aren’t most businesses, and they do most of their business at night.

But I would return…later!

After dark! When the maids pop up on the sidewalks. They don’t much like you taking pictures because that’s for paying customers. At first it’s really adorable. But then it’s like, hm, how satisfied are they ladies with their lots in life? And did that girl just end a sentence in “nya” (meow)? And can I find that cute and at the same time be embarrassed for her? We actually went to a maid cafe during Trip 1, and that was the way to go- with a group. Because you need back up when a young person in a maid costume asks you to cast a spell of deliciousness on your food.

Anyway, the important thing to find here is the games. The American arcade is almost dead, but in Akihabara, it’s doing well. These games blow me away with tall screens, mini screens, round screens, and all sorts of controls and interfaces. One of my favorite games has been Dance Dance Revolution, and I know that guy is not the latest thing, it has a few cousins in the rhythm genre. I give you: Groove Coaster!

It has a platform you stand on that resonates the bass so you feel the vibrations of the song/game level. I’m a fidgety person and proud owner of a genuine Fidget Cube, so the desk drumming thing is a thing for me. You have J-pop blasting in your headphones (that you brought, because by Trip IV, you’re figured this out), a nice clicky tactile feedback with the boop sticks, and a that continuous run-and-jump feeling you get with platformers, like you’re in the moment.

There was another game I saw during Trip IV that I recognized from Trip III. The round rhythm game that I have really bad luck securing one. And the stupid thing is, there are 2 machines, but if someone is on one, you can’t have a separate game. It’s together or solo, and I didn’t want to fudge up someone’s game so I can try it out.

And it seems to have a lot of girls playing it, and I’m a girl, so wouldn’t I like it? I’ll never know. I do know you play by smacking the outer ring of buttons. Like things are coming out from the center and you smack them when they get to the edge. I think.

Back to Trip III, I was pretty hesitant about playing anything. So much Japanese, and if I can’t read the instructions…And I’m sure as heck avoiding the crane games that are everywhere and obviously rigged to make you waste way more money than the prizes are worth. Yes, so I thought a shooter is surely something easy and obvious. So I tried Luigi Mansion. That’s got to be easy! Just point your little Ghost Busters stick at the ghosts and fire! But no…I failed. I failed horribly and with embarrassing confusion. Luigi was trying to help me out, but he didn’t speak English.



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